Motorbikes and Accidents in Thailand

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Here's a scary fact. The British government says that last year, over 250 Brits died in Thailand, and most of them were because of motorbike accidents. That number does not include other tourists from other countries and locals as well, so as to how many have died in motorbike accidents - we can't really tell.

Going back, this number was released by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office or the FCO. This fact supports the claims that Thailand is indeed the most dangerous spot for vacations when it comes to Brits, and this is because of the number of motorbike accidents that have caused either death or hospitalization. While the FCO has just looked at incidents that have involved Brit citizens, other tourists from other countries are also just as vulnerable to accidents while they are on vacation.

Plenty of Thais use motorbikes in order to get around easily. And because of the popularity of the motorbikes, it seems that even small kids already know how to drive them. Just because they can get you anywhere, and just because everyone's driving them - don't fool yourself into thinking that these two wheeled vehicles are easy to use. Motorbikes are practically easy to rent and great to use - you can get around and head from one place to another without the hassle of public transport. But word of caution - only use motorbikes if you know how to drive one, and if you know and completely understand how the rules of the road work.

Remember that even expert bikers get into accidents - how much more would the risk be if you don't know how to drive one?

While motorbikes are a great way to experience Thailand - do make sure that you adhere to safety rules of the government. Till then, take care!

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But word of caution - only use motorbikes if you know how to drive one, and if you know and completely understand how the rules of the road work.

Remember that even expert bikers get into accidents - how much more would the risk be if you don't know how to drive one?

While motorbikes are a great way to experience Thailand - do make sure that you adhere to safety rules of the government. Till then, take care!

Even if you are an expert biker, driving in Thailand can be very hazardous. Although I use motorcycle taxis and have driven a motorcycle in Thailand, it still scares the devil out of me.

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Is it because of the quality of the motorbikes, or the style of driving? Or because of the roads?

It's because of the quality of the motorbikes, the style of driving, and the roads. It's because of the stupidity of drivers who don't look where they are going and come zooming out of intersections. It's because of the constant going the wrong way on divided roads and one-way streets.
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It's because of the quality of the motorbikes, the style of driving, and the roads. It's because of the stupidity of drivers who don't look where they are going and come zooming out of intersections. It's because of the constant going the wrong way on divided roads and one-way streets.

I don't think it is because of the quality of the motorbikes. Suzuki, Yamaha, Honda and the like are good quality bikes. It is the crazy drivers and all the traffic, in my opinion.
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All you have to do is to observe the motorbikes and you will see them going the wrong way, driving on the sidewalk (pavement for Brits), weaving in and out of traffic, jumping the lights, ignoring the lights and passing on the left side. I know there are other violations; what did I miss?

Overloading the small bikes with passengers, chickens, pigs, and other market goods.

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I think it is a widely held belief, at least among farang that Thai drivers are somehow less than cognizant of basic traffic laws. My perception is that the " laws" here are more like guide lines. If we stop trying to impose the traffic laws from our home countries, it becomes much less stressful. In Thailand driving into oncoming traffic for relatively short distances is acceptable. It is not viewed as driving the" wrong way"

What still baffles me however, is why during a heavy rain or deep dusk, most drivers do not turn on their headlights.

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What still baffles me however, is why during a heavy rain or deep dusk, most drivers do not turn on their headlights.

You would think turning on your headlights would be common sense. In a heavy rain I would pull over and wait for the rain to stop but most Thais don't do that.
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I think the craziest of all are the people who carry infants on their motorbikes and the infants have no protection of any kind. No helmet, no nothing.

In the West, they would be arrested for child abuse or endangering the welfare of a child.
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Here is a story from Tennessee about a motorcyclist that led to three arrests.

JONESBOROUGH, Tenn. – Washington County authorities said a motorcyclist riding down the road without a helmet led to a series of discoveries and three arrests. The Johnson City Press reported that when officers stopped 21-year-old outside his home on Tuesday, they found he wasn't alone. The man also had an 18-month-old baby on board, also without a helmet.

As they wrote him up for reckless endangerment, evading arrest and driving on a suspended license, officers learned another man at the home was a fugitive from North Carolina. They arrested him as well.

But before the officers could leave, they spotted a third man allegedly breaking into a nearby barn. So they arrested him, too.

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You would not believe some of the things you see involving motorbikes. I have seen a guy riding on the back of a motorbike with what looked to be 20 feet of metal rods on his shoulder. Unbelievable.

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